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THE CONQUESTS OF THE EMPEROR QIANLONG
THE CONQUESTS OF THE EMPEROR QIANLONG

THE COMPLETE SET OF SIXTEEN ENGRAVINGS OF THE BATTLES OF HUNAN, AFTER FENG NING

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THE CONQUESTS OF THE EMPEROR QIANLONG
The Complete Set of Sixteen Engravings of the Battles of Hunan, After Feng Ning
Commissioned by the Emperor Qianlong to commemorate his victory over the Miao minorities in Hunan province in 1795, depicting the Manchu army subduing the Miao in various battlescenes, ambushes, sieges and attacks, all set amid mountainous terrain, each accompanied by a poetic inscription added by hand and dated with the cyclical dates to 1795, 1796 and 1798
Each approx. 20 x 35in.(52.8 x 89.5cm.) (16)

Lot Essay

The artist for the original drawings was the court artist Feng Ning, who specialized in portraits and architectural scenes at the end of the Qianlong period. Later in life he apparently changed his name to Feng Xiang.

This series of engravings, as well as engravings of battles in Yunnan and Formosa, is discussed by Walter Fuchs, "Die Schlachtenbilder aus Turkestan von 1765 als Historische Quelle nebst Bemerkungen zu einigenspateren Serien", Monumenta Serica vol. IV, Peiping, 1939-1940. He lists the set of sixteen Hunan engravings with their partial Chinese titles, which may be approximately translated as follows:
1) Raising an army
2) Reinforcements Arriving at the Battle against the Miao at Xiushan
3) The Victorious Battle of Baomushan
4) Lifting the Seige at Songtao
5) The Seige of Yongsui City
6) The Victorious Battle at Lancaoping
7) The Victorious Battle over the Bandits at Huanghua
8) The Battle of Simazhai
9) The Attack on Rebel Hideouts at Chaitou, Liutao etc.
10) Battle of the Fortifications at Kaotou, culminating in the Beheading of Wu Pansheng
11) The Victorious Battle at Liaojiazhong, culminating in the Beheading of Shishanbao
12) The Battle to retake Qianzhou
13) The Victorious Battle to Overcome Huxiao
14) The Victorious Battle over the Rebel Den at Pinglong
15) The Campaign at Jielai
16) The Victorious Battle at Shilong

A partial set of these engravings (nos. 2, 3, 6, 8, 13, 14) is in the collection of the Muse Guimet and is discussed and illustrated along with the more famous engravings after Castiglione, in the monograph by Michle Pirazzoli-t'Serstevens, Gravures des Conqutes de l'Empereur de Chine K'ien-long au Muse Guimet, Paris, 1969 p. 43, and pp. 50-55.
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